Can fashion influencers convince us to consume less? A virtual Times event

Love Island, the hit reality TV show that catapulted big influencers like Molly-Mae Hague to fame, recently switched its main sponsorship from fast fashion brands like I Saw It First and Missguided to eBay.

While this kind of public statement will raise public awareness of the virtues of responsible fashion, the fashion industry remains largely trapped in a vicious circle of poor quality, mass production and hyper-frequent collection releases. In large part, consumer demand and a thriving social media ecosystem are funding the continuation of business as usual, with dire consequences for water use and quality, material waste and labor fairness. The industry is also responsible for 10 percent of all global emissions and uses more energy than aviation and shipping combined.

Sustainable solutions to these damaging trends—like upcycled fabrics and second-hand business models—have not yet been mass-adopted, and the cultural preferences that drive hyperconsumption still prevail. How can influencers and consumers transform the fashion industry to make it more responsible? How can we channel Gen Z’s obsession with the latest looks into a celebration of sustainability and reusability? How can we present “old” or “used” clothing as “new new” and encourage companies to create new business models?

In this thought-provoking session on July 28 at 1:30 p.m. Eastern Time, Vanessa Friedman, fashion director and chief fashion critic for The New York Times, is accompanied by:

  • Shaway yesFounder, yehyehyeh

  • Brett StanilandModel, academic and advocate for sustainable fashion

  • Chloe AsamProgram Manager, OR Foundation

  • Ron PerryManagers, The New York Times

We look forward to welcoming you to our conversation.

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